FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 1, 2012
Media Contact: Jill Bernstein, 602-651-1227; firstname.lastname@example.org
Keep Arizona Beautiful Announces 2012 Environmental Stewardship Award Winners
Phoenix, AZ – Keep Arizona Beautiful announced the 2012 winners of the Environmental Stewardship Awards at the 2012 Arizona Recycling Conference on November 15 at the Renaissance Hotel and Spa in Glendale, AZ.
To celebrate the great strides being made throughout the state, Keep Arizona Beautiful gives annual awards to publicly recognize businesses, nonprofit organizations, government entities, community groups, schools, and individuals who have gone above and beyond in five different categories to enhance their communities and protect the Arizona environment.
Corporate Stewardship – This year the award went to Global Electronic Recycling. Recognizing the need for transparency in its environmental practices, Global was proactive in becoming one of the first recyclers in Arizona to seek and receive an R2/RIOS “Certified Electronics Recycler” certification. The external audits required by this certification bridge the gap between the goal and the reality of environmental accountability. It is a certification now required by the Federal Government to recycle its electronic waste and attests to the efforts of Global in honing the business model that allows for both profitability and environmental accountability. That business model allowed Global to process 14.8 million pounds electronic waste in 2011 and send a mere 1.8% of that material, material that cannot as of yet be recycled, to landfill.
Community Stewardship – This year the award went to Environmental Concerns Organization, Inc. (ECO) ECO operates the Recycling Association of Maricopa (RAM), which serves residents of a 400-square mile area and accepts more household commodities for recycling than any other facility in Arizona. In addition to the regular RAM operations, ECO sponsors Tire Recycling & Household Hazardous Waste Events (honoring America Recycles Day & Earth Day); an annual garage sale; desert cleanups with the Pinal County Juvenile Court; ‘Copa Cares Bulk Trash Clean Up Events; an annual Earth Day Art Recycling Contest; and participates in the City of Maricopa’s Kid’s Day Event.
ECO’s measureable community impact this past year alone includes: Nearly 10,000 tires, 39.5 tons of electronics, over 2 tons of batteries, 7.6 tons of plastics, 19.3 tons of metals, over 800 linear feet of fluorescent light bulbs containing mercury, and 62 tons of OCC/paper were recycled. Additionally, 950 gallons of paint, motor oils, and other corrosive and flammable liquids were either recycled or safely made inert; 12 tons of appliances were either recycled or re-purposed; 532 tons of bulk trash was safely removed from the community; and thousands of plastic bags were diverted from the landfill to the local food bank.
Education Stewardship – This year the award went to the E.A.R.T.H. Program at Maryvale High School founded in 2008 by teacher, Christine Turner. Since their inception they have gotten recycling bins into all the classrooms and offices on campus; joined the Green School Alliance; established an eco column in the school newspaper; won awards and recycling grants; and begun planning and implementing a community garden. Over 100 students consistently volunteer in their recycling program.
Environmental Leader of the Year – This year the award went to Bob Cisco, Director of Engineering with the Westin Kierland Resort and Spa. The impact of the green initiatives put into practice by Bob Cisco is best explained with the numbers and figures of the overall impact to the environment. There has been a significant increase year-over-year on recyclable production – from 94.2 tons as of August 2011 to 106.7 tons in August 2012, a 13% year-over-year improvement. In addition to paper, cardboard, plastic, aluminum and tin, and food waste recycling, the process of recycling every bottle, jar or glass vessel was implemented at the beginning of 2012, in fact, eliminating glass from the waste stream at the Resort altogether. In less than six months, since May of 2012, over 16,827 pounds of glass has been recycled.
Bob and his engineering team have also installed a computerized and climate-controlled water monitoring system to efficiently irrigate approximately 25 acres of Resort landscaping. This has significantly reduced the amount of water wasted, while still allowing the Resort’s lush landscaping to remain beautiful, even throughout the hot summer months. All boiler controls have been upgraded to a ProTemp/Demand Based Energy method controlled by Energy Trac. Since the first two months of installing this operation, the Resort has saved over $8.4K, resulting in s 3.2 month ROI. These recent investments in time and money made by the Resort have added to the already streamlined green practices in place.
Environmental Volunteer of the Year – This year the award went to Dallas Peterman, an intern with the Navajo Land Grant Office. Dallas Peterman organized and carried out a 95-mile highway cleanup effort on the Navajo Nation between June 18 and July 3, 2012. During that time, Dallas and his fiance, Sierra Yazzie, along with volunteers at various stages of the route, picked up an estimated 8,000 pounds of trash along the sides of Route 64 from Tsaile to Chinle, U.S. Highway 191 from Chinle to Many Farms and BIA Route 59 from Many Farms to Kayenta. They camped out along the way.
About Keep Arizona Beautiful – KAZB is an affiliate of Keep America Beautiful and an independent 501(c) 3 organization. Our mission: Keep Arizona Beautiful empowers citizens and communities throughout Arizona to care for their environment through litter prevention, recycling and beautification. We accomplish our mission through affiliate partnerships, education, individual and corporate volunteerism, and philanthropy.
Learn more about Keep Arizona Beautiful at www.kazb.org